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The Refuge Festival


  • Tue 17 Mar 2020, 10:00am
  • Wed 18 Mar 2020, 10:00am
  • Thu 19 Mar 2020, 10:00am
  • Fri 20 Mar 2020, 10:00am
  • Sat 21 Mar 2020, 10:00am

Show more sessions


All Ages

We invite you this February to come take refuge at the Motley Bauhaus for a new festival celebrating the diversity of voices and experiences in this beautiful multicultural municipality.

Opening on the 27th of February and running until the 21st of March, The Motley Bauhaus will be offering a home to artists who have personal experiences as refugees or asylum seekers coming to Australia. With visual art, musical and theatrical performances, artist talks, workshops and a podcast, Refuge is a celebration of diversity both in artistic expression and personal experience. At the launch, you can expect to hear from our guest speakers, feast on the food provided by the Morrocan Soup Bar, enjoy music from the Musical Journeys Ensemble, then soak in the launch of the Refuge Fine Art Exhibition.

Quick round up:

The Refuge Fine Art Exhibition
Also launching on the 27th of Feb is the Refuge Fine Art Exhibition. Bringing together some amazing artists with diverse practices together into one exhibition. Join us for the launch or drop in any time, during our opening hours, until the 21st of March. Gallery hours are 10–5 Wednesday–Saturday, also open evenings while there are events on.

Haus Musik
Intimately curated performances with a live Q&A showcasing the exceptional and diverse musical artistry of Naarm (Melbourne). For this edition we have:
Saray Iluminado Femme Trio: Saturday 29/2 @ 7pm
Good Luck Omen: Saturday 7/3 @ 7pm.

The ARTery Podcast
The Refuge Festival sees the return of the ARTery, offering you an audio link to all the goings on in this new festival. There will be artist interviews, vox pops, performance samples and of course the dulcet tones of May Jasper bringing you everything you didn’t know you wanted to know about our inaugural Refuge Festival.

Artist Talks
This series of Artists talks gives you the chance to get to know the artist behind the work. These free events are hosted as part of our ongoing desire to help artists infiltrate wider society by bridging the gap between artist and audience. On Thursday 5th you can hear from Zakiria Tahirian, on Monday 2nd you can meet Tadros Hannah, and Monday 16th come in to meet Emmanuel Asante

Artist Workshops
We are very pleased to be offering a chance to learn more about some of the artistic practices on display as part of the Refuge Festival. You can learn the traditional art of miniature painting from Zakiria Tahirian, Persian Dramatic Storytelling with Elnaz Sheshgalani, acrylic colour from Tadros Ibrahim, and traditional African painting from Emmanuel Assante. For times and to book tickets, check out the website.

Iranian Bauhaus. March 9th–15th @ 7:30pm
Performed in the style of pre-Islamic Naghali, an ancient Persian form of dramatic storytelling. This is a highly visual/gestural form of theatre, that uses the body to communicate archetypal aspects of the human psyche. The ambiguity of life, the unconscious and the unknown are all explored in this performance, within the framework of Persian puppets.

The Refuge Film Festival. Sunday March 15 @ 3pm
As part of the refuge Festival we invited film-makers from a refugee or asylum seeker background to be part of a mini film festival. Check the website for the full lineup and to book your spot.

Refuge has become such a politicised word it’s hard to hear it through all the noise. But refuge is more than a political football: it's safety. It's home. It's a way forward or place to hide. It's shelter from the rain, or a t-shirt when it's warm again, it's a friendly hug to forget your troubles or after a long day it's a bath with bubbles. Refuge can be just about anything and anywhere.

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